“Small, authentic, powerful. That’s Brooklyn as a brand,” said Jay Lee to a sea of overly cool entrepreneurs gathered last night at Williamsburg’s Brooklyn Brewery. As the founder of hyperlocal crowdfunding platform Smallknot, he ought to know.
The crowd of Brooklyn techies was around a hundred strong for the inaugural Northside Innovation Meetup, organized by Northside Media Group and sponsored in part by the Observer Media Group, to discuss what being in Brooklyn actually meant for innovation. Scott Stedman, CEO of Northside, said, “Brooklyn is an adjective.” J.B. Osborne of Red Antler said, “Being in Brooklyn speaks for us.” And Mr. Lee reminded us that “it’s okay to be small in Brooklyn.”
Healthy Hills? Everyday Health, the SoHo-based and more successful version of WebMd, has acquired EQAL, the creators of Lonelygirl15 and the owners of LaurenConrad.com. Everyday Health’s ad revenue grew 40 percent in the first quarter, compared to WebMD’s decline of 20 percent. This coincides with Everyday Health’s announcement that they’re moving beyond YouTube and launching a version of it’s web show “Recipe Rehab” for ABC stations around the country.
Diller Brings Back Dog Ben Silverman’s multimedia entertainment studio Electus, part of Barry Diller’s IAC, just sold ten episodes of a new show starring Dog the Bounty Hunter and his wife Beth to CMT. “Dog and Beth are not only great television characters,” said Electus CEO Chris Grant, “They are the best bounty hunters in the world, and this show is a natural evolution of their life story.”
The Real TechStars of New York
Is there anyone who isn’t on Kickstarter these days? The latest bandwagon-jumpers: The New York City Council, which has partnered with the artsy crowdfunding platform to create a landing page that highlights New York City-based projects.
The move is positioned as a way to help business owners in low-income neighborhoods get access to hard-to-find capital, a persistent problem.
Remember when microlending was going to solve everything? Now it’s crowdfunding. Wonder what it’ll be in five years?
The Real TechStars of New York
After three long months of toiling away at 36 Cooper Square, TechStars NYC’s spring 2012 class is finally ready to say, “Hello, world.” Or rather, “Show me the money.” This morning, 13 startups will present their exhaustively-rehearsed pitches to a crowd of more than 700 for the program’s third Demo Day. (Check out our live-blog from Webster Hall.)
Back in March, managing director David Tisch promised us his most visionary class yet. “They all take big swings,” he told Betabeat. “I think the ideas are all going for something big. I don’t think there are lot of safe bets or small bets.”
It’s that time again, boys and girls. TechStars NYC managing director David Tisch just announced the 14 companies who got the golden ticket to the accelerator and seed fund’s Spring class. Unlike the previous two programs, which operated out of Pivotal Labs, this class will call 36 Cooper Square home. (TechStars recently moved in to Foursquare’s old office in the Village Voice building.) “They’ll be able to sleep there easier,” Mr. Tisch quipped to Betabeat over the phone.
Last year, TechStars NYC funded 23 companies, 21 of which went on to raise $50 million after they graduated. According to Mr. Tisch, you can expect even bigger things from this class. The common element among all 14 newbies? “They all take big swings,” he said. “I think the ideas are all going for something big. I don’t think there are lot of safe bets or small bets.”